What Is an Area Chart?
If you’re reading this article, you’ve probably thought, “what is an area chart?” An area chart is a graphical representation of data where the area of each rectangle is proportional to the numerical value of the data point it represents. The creation of the first chart is credited to William Playfair in the 18th century. Playfair was a Scottish economist and pioneer of graphical methods of representing data. In addition to the areachart, he is credited with the development of the line chart, the bar chart, and the pie chart. Continue reading for a deeper look at area charts, what they are, how they’re used, and how to create one yourself.
What is an area chart used for?
An area chart is used to show how a particular variable changes over a period of time. The area between the x-axis and the line is filled in with color to represent the data. The chart is similar to the line chart, with the exception that the chart uses filled squares or rectangles to represent the data points. This gives the chart a more three-dimensional appearance and can be used to highlight specific data points. An area chart can help you answer important questions, such as “How did our revenue change over the past year?” or “What was the average temperature over the past month?”
How do you create an area chart?
To create an area chart, you first need to collect data and then create a table or spreadsheet to organize that data. Once you have your data organized, you can create your area chart in a software program such as Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets. In Excel, you can create chart by selecting the data you want to chart and then clicking on the “Insert” tab and selecting the “Area” chart type. Once you have created your chart, you can then add the data points by selecting the data series and clicking on the “plus” sign (+) next to the “Series” label. In Google Sheets, you can create chart by selecting the data you want to chart and then clicking on the “Chart” menu and selecting the “Area” chart type.
What are the types of area charts?
There are many different types of area charts, each with its own unique properties and uses. However, Some of the most common types of area charts are stacked area charts; 100% stacked area charts, cumulative area charts, percentage area charts, and dual-axis area charts. A stacked chart, for instance, displays data as a stack of bars; with the height of each bar representing the total value of the data for that category.
A 100% stacked area chart displays data as a stack of bars; with the height of each bar representing the percentage of the total value of the data for that category. Also, A cumulative chart can be used to track the total or incremental area under a curve; or the running total of a series of values. However, The chart typically consists of a series of stacked bars; with the value for each time period displayed in the corresponding bar.
What are some tips for creating effective area charts?
There are a few things to keep in mind when creating effective area charts, like consistency, color, and clutter. Some of the top tips for area chart creation are as follows:
- Use a consistent scale for the y-axis.
- Use the same color or shading for each area.
- Label the axes and include units of measurement.
- Use a legend to identify the data sets being compared.
- Keep the chart simple and uncluttered.
Above all else, area charts are a great way to visualize how a value changes over time; and with these tips, you’ll be able to harness the power of this data visualization tool in a cinch.